The Unfinished Poem
The house his mind once called its home
1771 – The American Wake
(published by The Galway Review)
My firstborn child declared his independence,
The death knell rang. America had called, cried freedom, hope.
While on the hill, the landlord nodded, raised the rents
The winds of fear and loss drowned out the tears we cried at wakes,
That final day; that darkest morning, as you had hope held high in rags,
You walked the gangplank, bravely bridged the old and new,
February East Winds
Salt and pepper snowflakes
Tea and Sympathy
He left her fearful, lonely.
Ghosts brushed past her;
She wakened, wrote her pain
Afterwards She Zipped her lips With fine stitches; The silent needle scarred. She buried it deep In the pocket of her handbag, Stayed in her gilded cage With a silent bird’s rage; Her plumage a masterpiece Masking her shame.
|The Unfinished Poem and other poems are © Caroline Johnstone|
Caroline Johnstone is originally from Northern Ireland, now living in Ayrshire. Since 2014, she has been telling stories through her poetry, writing mainly on philosophical, political and life experience themes. She has been published in The Galway Review, Positively Scottish, The Scottish Book Trust, Belfast Life, the Burningwood Literary Journal, HCE Review, in The Snapdragon Journal, The Dove Tales Anthology, The Bangor Literary Journal and the latest Federation of Writers (Scotland) anthology Landfall. She was also shortlisted for Tales in the Forest, the Imprint Festival, and by People Not Borders.
She’s taken part in The Big Renga, a month-long collaborative poem, and was interviewed by Sara Cox on BBC Radio 2 about this. She is a Scottish Poetry Library Ambassador, a member of the Federation of Writers (Scotland), has been interviewed by children and parents in Dubai at a poetry workshop there, helps with the social media for the cross-community group Women Aloud NI, is part of the FreshAyr initiative and their poetry events, and she runs The Moving On Poetry Group weekly in Kilmarnock.